“The Werewolf’s Daughter” is a Slovakian tale from The Book of Werewolves. This tale does not deny the presence of werewolves in their society and this theme is also seen in the tale of “Little Red Riding Hood”. The story begins the story by describing a family whose father is a werewolf. This werewolf has nine daughters, all suitable for marriage, however the youngest daughter is described to be the most beautiful of all the sisters. One day, the werewolf pondered the benefits of having to support so many girls. He concluded that the only way to solve this problem was to get rid of them all. He went to the forest to cut wood and instructed one of his daughters to bring him dinner while he was out. His eldest daughter did as she was told and arrived earlier than expected. When questioned why she was early she replied that she wished to strengthen him and ensure he did not go hungry, showing her love and compassion for her father.
While the werewolf ate his dinner, he thought of a plan of how to rid his daughter so he insisted she come look at the pit he had been digging. He dishonestly told her that the pit was for their family to be buried when they die, because they were not wealthy he wanted to ensure they had a place to lay. Agreeing, the daughter went to the side of the pit with her father. However, once they got there he told her now she must die and be put in the pit, she begged not to die but he threw her in anyways and killed her by crushing her head with a stone. The werewolf resumed his work, upon dusk a second daughter arrived with food. She met the same fate as the eldest daughter. He did this with all his daughters up until the last one, the youngest.
The youngest daughter was well aware that her father was a werewolf and was lament of her sisters not returning home. She was unsure if her father kept them for company or to help with his work, even so she made him food and began her journey to take it to him. The was cautions upon her arrival and came near where her father was working to see a large fire burning two human heads. She left the fire and approached her father, offering him the food. He was pleased with her and asked her to stack wood while he ate. However, she did not and asked him where her sisters were. He lied and told her they were getting wood for him and he would bring her to them if she followed. Deceitfully, he lead her to the pit and told her, just like the others, that she must die now with her sisters. The youngest daughter agreed, but asked him to turn aside while she undressed before he slayed her. When he turned, the daughter pushed him into the pit and she ran in attempt to save her own life. Her werewolf father was unharmed by the fall and began to pursue her. As he gained on her she threw behind her each piece of clothing she was wearing. However, her father tears through them all. The daughter made her way into a hayfield and hid in the smallest hay stack she could find. Despite his best efforts, the werewolf could not find her and his strength leaves him to retire to the forest.
The king of their community comes across her in the hay on one of his daily hunting trips. He has her carried out and taken to the palace where they marry and she becomes queen. They decided upon marriage that no beggar will be let into their palace. After years of peace a beggar does get in, and it is her father. He finds his way to their nursery and cuts the throat of both her children and placed the knife under her pillow to frame her. The king assumed his wife was the murderer and sent her away with her two dead sons. However, a hermit arrives and brings the children back to life, the king then realizes his mistake. The king and queen are reunites and the werewolf is throw from a cliff into the sea ending his life. From this point on the king and queen live out happy lives.
Andrew Lang, The Blue Fairy Book, 5th edition (London: Longmans, Green, and Company 1891), pp. 51-53.
Sabine Baring-Gould, The Book of Werewolves: Being an Account of a Terrible Superstition (London: Smith, Elder, and Company 1865), pp. 124-128.
Comparing "The Werewolf's Daughter" and "Little Red Riding Hood" (Charles Perrault)
The Slovakian folktale "The Werewolf's Daughter" compares to the Charles Perrault version of "Little Red Riding Hood" in many ways. The most noteable comparison lies within the idea of female appearance. The main character of "Little Red Riding Hood" is Little Red Riding Hood herself, which is a very beautiful young lady. Little Red Riding Hood is described in the story as "The prettiest creature who was ever seen". In "The Werewolf's Daughter", all nine daughters in the story were also extremely gorgeous, but the youngest one was the prettiest. We can clearly see that there is some type of connection between the female appearance and the pleasing of a Werewolf.
Another clear resemblence between the two folktales is the concept behind the Werewolf taking his time to be careful as he hunts his prey. In "Little Red Riding Hood", the Wolf has his chance to eat the young lady while she is still in the woods before she even gets to her grandmother's house, but the wolf decides to wait because of the "woodcutters working nearby". In "The Werewolf's Daughter", the werewolf father strategically lures each of his 9 daughters down to the forest in order to murder each one, without the other ones knowing. The biggest difference between the two stories is the ending. In "Little Red Riding Hood", the Werewolf is successful in eating it's prey at the end, but not so much in "The Werewolf's Daughter". The Werewolf father ended up killing all of his daughters except the youngest, who actually escaped his rath and eventually was found by royalty. The Werewolf father was eventually caught some years later by the King and was "cast off a high cliff into the sea and that is the end of him".